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    Gildemesh Essay

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    “Destiny in Gilgamesh and The Iliad” Stories do not need to inform usof things. From Gilgamesh for example, we know that some of the people who livedin the land between the Tigris and Euphates rivers in the second and thirdmilleniums BCE.

    We know they celabrated a king named Gilgamesh; we know theybelieved in many gods; we know they were self- -consious of their owncultivation of the natural world; and we know they were literate. In the story,The Iliad we also know that great rulers and gods ruled and where top priorityof the lands. Point being it can be argued that the story of Gil- -gamesh andthe Iliad destiny’s are quite the same in relivence of the wars and the way’s oflife both of the story’s complete to meaningful death. In hand which comtr- -ibutesto both of the epics. In the story of Gilgamesh, it is important to look carefulwhat happened in the story; that is , look at it as if the actions and people itdescribes actually took place or existed. The questions raised by a character’sactions discuss the implic- -ations of their consequences.

    But it’s not toconsider how the story is put together rather how it uses the conventions oflanguage, of events with beginings and endings of description of character andstorytelling itself to reawaken our sensitivity to the real world. The realworld is the world without conventions, the unnameable, unrep- resentableworld–in it’s continuity of action, it’s shadings and blurrings of characterits indecipherable patterns of being. The Iliad and Gilgamesh story’s is greatlya remminder of the way life is today; just different in time but neitherless tosay similiar in goals and destiny’s. Moreover, in the prologue of Gilgamesh it’sfound to know that he was two- -thirds god and one-third man, and his knowledgeis the key that follows. Gilgamesh is a hero– more beautiful, more courageous,more terrifying than the rest of us; his desires, attributes, andaccomplishments epitomize our own. Yet he is also mortal: he must experiance thedeath of others and also die himself.

    How much more must a god rage againstdeath than we who are merely mortal! And if he can reconile himself with deaththen surely we can. In fact, without death his life would be mean- -ingless, andthe adventures that make up the epic would disappear. The story begins with thecoming of Enkidu. As a young man and a god Gilgamesh has no compasion with thepeople of Uruk. He is their king but not their shepherd; he kills their sons andrapes the daughters. Hearing the peolpe’s lament, the gods create Enkidu as amatch for Gilgamesh, a second self:”Let them contend together and leaveUruk in quiet”(31).

    The plan works in several ways. First Enkidu preventsGilgamesh from entering the house of a bride and bridegroom; they fight embraceas friends. Second, Enkudu and Gilgamesh undertake a journey into the forest toconfront the terrible Humbaba. There they encourage each other to face deathtriumphantly: All living creatures born of the flesh shall sit at least in theboat of the west/ and when it sinks/when the boat of Magilum sinks/ they aregone but we shall go forward and fix our eyes on this monster. (35) Whileeverlasting life is not his destiny, Gilgamesh will leave behind him a name thatendures.

    “I will go to the country where the ceder is felled/ I will setup my name in the place where names of famous men are written”(32) ThusGilgamesh turns his attention away from small personal desires to loftierpersonal desires desires that benifit rather than Uruk. To remember from theprogue that the walls of the city, made from cedar taken from the forest, stillstand in actuality or imagi- -nation to proclaim Gilgamesh’s fame, and the veryfirst sentence of the epic attest to the immortality of his name. But theimmortality of a name is less the ability to live forever than to die. Third andmost important, Enkidu teaches Gilgamesh what it means to be human; he teacheshim the meaning of love and compassion, the meaning of loss and of growingolder, the meaning of mortality!! However similar in the Iliad the main theme ofthe story is also war, unlike Gilgamesh there’s two sides having war with eachother aswell as themselves and family. The epic begins with an arguement betweenthe greek king and the chief fighter.

    Homer’s outlook on the war itself isunique and compeling as where the battle between the greeks and the trojans arecaused mainly because of a woman. At the period women where belittled andtreated like whores and it was all fine. A war that was so intense the god Zeuswas called upon to help, first off Apollo is angry because Agamemnon(king of thegreeks) has failed to let one of the god’s priests ransome a daughter, Agamemnonhad alloted himself as a war-prize. Ag- -amemnon reluctantly gives girl up butinsists on taking in her place Briseis(achellis concubine; captured by thegreeks) who was originally assigned to Achilles-hence the “wrath ofAchelles,” which is the epic’s announced topic. Achelles complains to hismother Thetis, who presuades Zeus to let the trojans prevail in battle, untilAchelles’s honor is satisfied.

    That’s the thing about this war between theGreeks and Trojans all of the flat characters of these two stories seem’s to betheir destiny to die with honor. Later to find out in the story of the Iliadwhen the cheif fighter Hector leads the Trojans through the greeks wall withvingance. Poseidon disobeys Zeus and help rally the greeks. Poseidon keepsAgamemnon from calling retreat to the ships, while hera (borrowing a magicgirdle from Aprhodite) seduces Zeus and lulls him to sleep. Hector is wounded bya stone, and the Trojans are driven back.

    Zeus wakes up mad at his wife andsends Apollo to heal Hector, who comes back and burns the Greek ships. Later on,Hector reproaches himself for not having retreated at the first appearance ofthe Achilles. He goes out to meet Achilles in single combat and is slain. So hefinally met his destiny.

    Achilles ties his body behind a chariot and drag it offto the greek ships. Finally, these are some contributes whereas the works ofGilgamesh and the Iliad are the same and virtualy look upon as the choosers oftheir own true destiny and that’s DEATH.Mythology

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